well, european leaders are scrambling this evening to respond to france losing its triple a rating. president sarkozy is holding crisis talks right now, and the german finance minister has issued a statement saying the judgment of ratings agencies should not be given too much weight. capitals await confirmation, the french finance ministry has confirmed that s&p has stripped it of its credit rating, knocking it down to aa-plus. the downgrade creates renewed doubt about the eurozone's ability to fight a financial crisis, but the french ministry has insisted that it will be deciding on its future, and not private agencies. >> the rumor, traders in paris off guard. the downgrade is a clear signal that the crisis in it the eurozone is far from being resolved. even though its economy has been sluggish over the past few
years, france remains one of the eurozone's heavyweights. >> it is not good news for france, of course. the downgrade of the u.s. last summer gave the confirmation that we deserved it aaa and have a very low rate. so we do not have to overestimate this news. of course, it is not good news, but it is not dramatic. >> downgrades are also looming for other crisis-hit eurozone members. above all, italy and spain. yields on their bonds rose sharply on friday, prompting the european central bank to step in and buy more bonds from the governments of rome and madrid. >> a short time ago, we spoke to our correspondent in paris and asked her about the reaction in france to the downgrade. >> the atmosphere is quite nervous. the french president is already sitting for hours with his
minister of finance, talking about this new crisis. actually, i think it is quite a shock for the french people. it is a matter of pride, but it could also have consequences for the saving of the bureau. for the moment, the rescue fund depends on the best reading of germany and france. if france loses its aaa rating, that could mean it gets much more expensive for the bailout fund to get money on the markets. maybe for france the news is not as bad as for the eurozone. >> european markets had been trading higher prior to the ratings alert. our correspondence sent us this summary of the friday trading session from frankfurt. >> just the report and speculation that s&p could downgrade several euro member countries, especially france, led to turmoil at the european stock markets. the dax had started off in positive territory in this early
friday trading, driven by the hope that a new italian option would be received well. the auction has been a success, but nevertheless, the rumors that france could lose its triple a rating led to heavy losses on the dax. >> we can say in frankfurt for a closer look at friday's numbers. germany's blue-chip dax gave up about 16% hear nothing to dramatic going into the weekend. the euro stocks 50 down by about 13%. across the atlantic in new york, the dow currently trading lower by about nearly -- over what 6%, but it is off its lows for the day at 12,390. the year in sick -- the euro trading at a value of $1.26. >> families of people massacred
have hailed the decision to undergo another mental evaluation as a major breakthrough. and a earlier assessment found him unfit to stand trial, and there's now the possibility least he could appear in court. families also hope the trial will lead to more details about how the launch his killing spree and if he had help. >> it was public outrage that led to this new evaluation. he planned the attacks carefully and was conscious of his actions when he killed 77 people. many norwegians have asked why he was declared unfit to stand trial. independent experts also cast doubt on the original diagnosis that he was legally insane. the court has taken their opinions into account. >> it is precisely because this case is so extremely serious and has attracted such consistent criticism that we must again examine the question of mental competency. >> the psychiatrist interviewed
by 13 times and diagnosed him as suffering from paranoid schizophrenia. people with the disorder may experienced hallucinations or hear voices that command and to commit violent acts. other norwegian psychiatrists question the diagnosis. they say he may have been suffering from the delusion that he was on a crusade against islam, but he made clear decision to mount the attacks, suggesting he has a narcissistic personality disorder, an exaggerated sense of self importance, and a lack of empathy, but that would not mean he is unfit to stand trial. but he has said he does not want any more meetings with psychiatrists, and that could make reassessing his mental state difficult. them in the united states says it went up great diplomatic relations with burma after president barack obama called the release of 200 political prisoners is substantial step forward in reforming its political system.
secretary of state said washington was now ready to begin the process of exchanging full ambassadors after an absence of two decades. >> it is a national day of celebration in burma. this politician and journalist is one of many political prisoners who have spent years or decades in captivity. now, some of burma's most famous political inmates are, including monks who led an uprising against the regime five years ago. and many former politicians who fell out of grace with the junta. >> the process must be the same for every ethnic group here and he cannot make peace with one group and then fight with another. we have seen ethnic unrest for 50 to 60 years. if everyone involved in this process is honest and has the will to work together, then i see a chance of it being successful. >> burma's leaders seem to be working towards democratic
reform to help bring the country's economic isolation to an end. recently, there have been strong signals of encouragement from the international community, but rights groups remain cautious. >> we think it is very important at this point for people to recognize that we are only part way there. we have to make sure that we get to the end of this road and ensure that all prisoners are released. burma's government has taken further steps to underscore its commitment to democratic change. thursday, reagan signed a historic cease-fire with rebels in the thai border region, ending one of the world's longest-running insurgencies. for the rebels, this, too, was cause for celebration. >> what role will the country's leading opposition figure play as the reform process takes shape in burma? we put that question to an expert on the country from the german institute for international and security affairs.
>> the current president has recently announced that after the upcoming elections, he would be allowed to take a position within the government if elected, so that would certainly lead towards a kind of negotiated transition between forces from the former military regime from the democratic opposition. again, the influence that she will be allowed to exert will depend on whether hardline forces in the government and the military allow her to make a significant impat. >> other news now -- syria is in danger of sliding into civil war. that at least is the warning
from the arab league. there are also reports coming in at the syrian army has launched its biggest assault against the opposition since the league's monitors last month. syrian government forces have reportedly shelled a town near the lebanese border. the opposition says they saw tanks entering the town and thehoms, a for your reported killed in rallies after friday prayers. arrest is also continuing in yemen. the six people died in firefights between police and separatists. the demonstrators won the south to secede from the rest of the country. mass protests in the capital remained peaceful, though. tens of thousands took to the streets to protest the deal that gives him an's president immunity from prosecution when he steps down. he's accused of large-scale corruption and having killed many of his political opponents. let's stay in the region. more about the arab uprising and
how it is affecting the economy of tunisia. >> getting back to business, the story here. one year after a popular uprising brought down the government in geneva, the country's economy is slowly recovering from the effects of the revolution, but the new democratically elected government plans to take measures this year to try to get tunisia's economy back on track. then the official unemployment rate is about 19%. many people who had been employed in the tourist industry have now lost their jobs. because the number of foreign minister -- foreign visitors fell off sharply during and after the revolution. the government is trying to boost economic growth and create jobs by attracting new investment, particularly from neighboring libya and from turkey. the government has set its sights high. >> in 2012, we will try to achieve the growth rate of about 4%. that would be an important achievement, especially since the european economy is slowing down. and a tenacious high
unemployment rate contributed to the anger many people felt in the run-up to last year's election -- >> tunisia's high unemployment rate. the government realize that he had to make employment a high priority. >> friday but disappoint earning the disappointing earnings from jp morgan, which reported a sharp drop in quarterly earnings, saying it was hit by big losses in its investment, banking, and trading divisions. jpmorgan, the largest american bank by assets, said it earned $3.7 million, or 90 cents a share in the final months of 2011, but the results were down 23% from the same time a year ago. shares in german software giant s.a.p. were the leading gainers on friday after the firm reported gains in both sales and profits for the fourth quarter of last year. operating profit at the world's largest maker of business software jumped by 10% to 1.78 billion euros for the quarter, exceeding expectations.
operating profit for the whole year increased to nearly 5 billion euros. the company is expected to announce its forecast for this year on january 25. >> the problems are not stopping for the german president. christian wulff has yielded to a week of pressure to publish a da's year of answers to questions by journalists about a controversial hormone -- published a dossier. the newspaper that broke the story is making new allegations the president is used government frequent-flier miles. >> germany's president has once again made headlines in the tabloid that broke his controversial private loan scandal last month. it says christian wulff might have used miles earned on official business to of great personal flight in 2007. both lawyers -- wulff's lawyer initially denied the claim but later said the miles in question were from his private account.
the state government has had little to add so far. >> he had a private frequent- flier account and an official account. that is all th information i have at present. >> the state chancellery in hanover where wulff used to be state premier said he is 150,000 miles from his private account for a business class upgrade. the opposition says wulff must make a decision. >> can this discussion be reconciled with the dignity of his office? he has like we missed the best time to step down. >> on wednesday, the opposition in lower saxony's state parliament will be demanding answers to over 100 questions regarding the former state premier's controversial private loan. >> art curators have put together a retrospective of a -- that they hope will help revive interest in a female artist the
revive the women's liberation movement here is expressed in her works for questions about classical concept of beauty and form. >> these are the signature works -- bright colors adorning full bodied women. critics say the works exhibit a sense of joy and strength. in all, a representation of the emancipated femininity. >> her words and body the fundamental them in an ideal. they are a form of self- actualization, far removed from the classic or fashionable notions of beauty in vogue during her lifetime. then was in, and these artworks stood in stark contrast. then the exhibition is far broader. when the artist was 23 years old, she suffered a nervous breakdown, and she produced her first artworks during her recovery. abused by her father as a child, she used her talent to vent pent-up agression.
>> she filled sacs with paint and hung them on the wall. she shot at them with a gun so they bled. then she was never one to comply with traditional notions of art. she relied on her rich imagination instead. the artist died 10 years ago, and the nanas remain her trademark, the she expressed a hope that her other works will not be forgotten. >> diablo body saddling team has achieved a victory. the competition took place on an eight-mile course off the coast of the united arab emirates. the next open sea leg gets under way saturday. a 4000-nautical-mile journey. the spanish not telefonica holds the overall lead.
>> welcome back. in the arab world, of the for% your autocratic governments that have fallen over the last year, two of them are seeing a political transition that it is hoped will lead to a more representative form of government in each of those countries. in both nations, islamic parties claiming to be moderate have made the biggest gains. the muslim brother would get the most seats in the first round in egypt. in second place with a solid as, a party that wants to impose sharia law, even on the part of the population that is christian. here is more. >> it is by the will of god that islamist parties have emerged the winners of each its elections.
that, at least, is what their followers believe. this is friday prayers in cairo. >> we will never said anything but god's laws. -- we will never accept anything but god's laws. the country will be better off when sharia law is the will of the land. >> the influence of the more radical form of islam can already be seen on the streets of cairo. ever more women are wearing body coverings, and the influence of the sec is unmistakable. it is financed and supported by saudi arabia. its goal is to write sharia law into each of the legislation. the nile delta is two hours by car from cairo. there was a wide-ranging electoral campaign here. that even if we are now taking part in politics, we are guided solely by islam. and they have received an
estimated $4 billion in funding from saudi arabia. for years, they have provided social services. now, many people expect the islamist parties will rescue them from poverty, but instead of developing plans to improve education or solve the country's economic crisis, their leaders have other priorities. >> this country must be purified, above all, on the beaches where there are naked women. >> we ask a spokesman if this spelled an end to egypt's vital tourist trade. >> no, for us, nudity and alcohol are forbidden. but people who want to come for medical treatment or to enjoy nature are welcome. >> each of's secularists and members of the christian minority are concerned by the success of the islamists. because of scenes such as the following. in a video posted on the internet, a sheikh calls
christians criminals and tells you not to join them at funerals or social gatherings. it is a tricky situation for each of its muslim brotherhood theory they promised tolerance towards liberals, christians, and foreign tourists, but the unexpected rise of the other party has put them under pressure. >> the muslim brotherhood will lead partners if they tend to be more radical in order to get grass-roots support. then, each faces -- and egypt faces criticism. >> the -- when they loaded the interview on the website, they pixilated the woman's image as if it were pornographic. and in the wake of the arab spring, the electoral gains made by islamic parties came as a
surprise, and it remains unclear what these voted results will mean for the region's future and its relations with major in europe. we will have analysis in a bit, but first, let's look at germany's response to the recent developments in the arab world. >> the german foreign minister's tore of north africa was designed to take the region's polls. democratic elections have propelled moderate islamist parties to power in several countries, including tunisia. the victory to a german politicians by surprise. >> we should have used the opportunity in the last few years to approach these groups and deepen contacts. we did, nevertheless, respond quickly to developments. the foreign minister personally named eight envoy to north africa, so i think we are set now. >> when to nation's elected a new parliament, berlin was hoping secular parties would win a majority.
>> it would be a mistake to live together all the islamic parties and strains of islamic thought in the different countries. you have to make distinctions. as a result of the revolution, there will be many islamic democratic party is in government in north africa. >> when the egyptians took to the streets demanding freedom and democracy, there was a space installed dubbed the tahrir lounge, giving activists a chance to attend discussions and lectures on democracy. now, germans have to except that it is the islamist parties who are poised to take power. >> we will also have channels of communication open to them. in the end, it is not chaos, party, and deprivation these groups are seeking to foster, but development. they need partners to help them, including the west for europe. >> regardless of who wins elections, germany's has pledged
to support economic developments in north africa with an additional 5 million euros. >> force, the most important reference point is good governance as well as respect for human rights. and that minorities and women do not face oppression in these societies. >> libya has yet to hold its first free elections. the german foreign minister has already held talks with the interim government. germany pledged funds for treating the behan's wound in the conflict -- wounded in the conflict -- treating libyans wanted in the conflict. first off, what is the reason behind the success of these islamic parties? does this success signal a turning away from the west? >> i do not think so, not necessarily. it is indeed a certain paradox that we see here. the arab revolution had nothing to do with islam, nothing to do with religion, and now, it is the religious parties who do
profit from a fair and free democratic election. the reason being that most people have no ideas about the goals of the secular parties and simply do not know the respective leadership of these parties, whereas emotionally, they are very close to religion, close to islam, and the muslim brothers in egypt -- for instance,, they have been a party, although forbidden, for years. people like the idea of being muslim, pious, and progressive i think the muslim brothers in egypt -- they are not a problem at all. majority, but the solophist movement indeed wants to turn back the wheel of history. they are not so successful because the egyptians are backward, but because they received so much money from saudi arabia that is financing these reactionary parties. they spread this money among their electorate, and this is why they become so influential
in egypt and other places. >> you mentioned solophists. to the christians in egypt need to worry about them? how big a threat are they right now? >> this is a situation -- a difficult situation in egypt because they are yearning for freedom of democracy, and they see that more and more people get more and more religious on the islamic side, and they are very much afraid of this movement. of course, they only received 80% of the vote, said this is not enough for them to get into power -- they only received 18% of the vote, and the moderate muslims will not form a coalition with them. they do prefer a collision with liberal and secular parties, but yet, it is very difficult for a christian to really be confident about the future. there's too much radicalism still on the ground. it will take time for this to evolve. >> thank you so much for your comments.